Quaternary semiconductors with positive crystal field splitting: Potential high-efficiency spin-polarized electron sources

Shiyou Chen; Wan-Jian Yin; Ji-Hui Yang; Gong, X. G.; Walsh, Aron; Su-Huai Wei
August 2009
Applied Physics Letters;8/3/2009, Vol. 95 Issue 5, p052102
Academic Journal
Traditional high efficiency spin-polarized electron sources (SPES) consist mainly of binary or pseudobinary zinc-blende GaAs based materials, whereas their ternary analogs II-IV-V2 (II=Zn, Cd, IV=Si, Ge, Sn, and V=As) as well as II-VI ternary analogs I-III-VI2 (I=Cu, Ag, III=Al, Ga, In, and VI=Se) have not drawn wide attention because their crystal field splitting ΔCF near the valence band maximum is either negative or close to zero in their ground state chalcopyrite structure. Using first-principles calculations, we show that some derivative quaternary I-III-II2-VI4 and II-IV-III2-V4 compounds can have coherent ground state stannite or kesterite structures with large and positive ΔCF due to their increased chemical and structural flexibility. We propose that ZnSiAl2As4 and CdGeAl2As4 in the stannite structure, and ZnSnGa2As4 and CuAlCd2Se4 in the kesterite structure could be good candidate SPES materials with high polarization and quantum efficiency.


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